Celebrating spring in the northeast: a pictorial essay

The ice is out of the river, the sun has been shining for three days, and today the entire world has been out enjoying the fine day.  Thanks be to God, to Mother Nature, and to anyone else who might be able to claim some responsibility.  It sure has made for a lovely Easter Sunday in Fredericton.  As I went for a long(ish) run earlier today, it was impossible not to feel good, even joyful.  Trees don’t unfurl their tender new leaves in this neck of the woods until mid-May, so we have several weeks ahead with unobstructed views of the broad, beautiful, rapidly flowing (and rising) St. John River, plus many smaller rivers and side streams.  We can take advantage of our increasing inventory of snow-free trails, as the snow pack on the unpaved trails surrenders to the warmth of the strengthening spring sun.  The dog-walkers have been out all winter, as have keen runners and cyclists.  But now we are joined by growing numbers of parents pushing strollers, kids on inline skates and skate boards, discerning walkers of all ages … pretty well everyone.  And every one of them is smiling.

For those of you who don’t get much snow, you were probably tired of your few months of dormant winter grass and leafless trees and are now exalting in daffodils, tulips, flowering trees and greening grass.  Or maybe you never have snow, in which case you must get tired of all that gardening and yard work!  When the main event of spring is seeing the snow melt (even though there is nothing more beautiful, snow does have a tendency to outlast its welcome), it’s remarkable how the yellowed grass and bare trees that seemed so grim in November can now seem so attractive.  It’s all a matter of perspective.

East end of downtown  waterfront from the trail crossing the St. John Rver

East end of downtown waterfront from the trail crossing the St. John Rver

Old train bridge converted to a very popular "Walking Bridge"

Old train bridge converted to a very popular “Walking Bridge”

A veritable Easter Parade on the Walking Bridge

A veritable Easter Parade on the Walking Bridge

Flood season is  approaching.  An ice-free river here; now we wait to see how much ice and snow farther north is left to melt and then how fast the river will rise.

Flood season is approaching. An ice-free river here; now we wait to see how much ice and snow farther north is left to melt and then how fast the river will rise.

Well, not all the ice is quite out.

Well, not all the ice is quite out.

Ice flows making their way down the side streams, along with rising water levels

Ice flows making their way down the side streams, along with rising water levels

One of our paved trails that parallels the river

One of our paved trails that parallels the river

A gaggle of young runners

A gaggle of young runners

Some of our many historical homes near the trail and river

Some of our many historical homes near the trail and river

Our own little stream is now ice-free as well. And only a few small piles of snow remain.

Our own little stream is now ice-free as well. And only a few small piles of snow remain.

Happy Easter, everyone. And welcome to spring, wherever you live.

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16 Responses to Celebrating spring in the northeast: a pictorial essay

  1. Kristina Taylor says:

    I just wanted to let you know that I’ve bookmarked this post and I visit it on those days when I feel like I need a little taste of home. I love seeing your pictures from around town!

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Hi Kristina. Thanks for letting me know. As soon as we have real spring (i.e. things actually turning green and flowery – surely that will happen sometime), I’ll post some more, just for you!

  2. Heyjude says:

    Lovely to see your part of the world Jane and a part that is high on my list – we want to do a self-drive through the Atlantic Provinces, just haven’t decided which time of year is best to do this – maybe you can advise?

    Not very spring-like here in the Shires although we did see the sun yesterday and my daffs are starting to peek through the frozen soil. As you said, gotta make the most of those sunny days 🙂

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Thanks for thinking about our part of the world, Jude. We would love to have you. New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and PEI are best from June-Sept or even to mid-Oct, and Newfoundland is really guaranteed best in July and Aug. I can’t get over the weather in Britain this winter. Aren’t daffs supposed to be out in Feb? And who heard of frozen soil in the UK?! I’ve been hearing about March blizzards in Sussex. Unimaginable. The good news is that the warming sun eventually does do its job!

  3. Roy McCarthy says:

    Beautiful pics Jane, and so unlike the Canada I imagine. Just love the Walking Bridge and how it serves a purpose its builders could not have envisaged.

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Thanks, Roy. Canada has many faces. We’re the gentle rolling part that has many similarities to New England in the U.S., not surprisingly, since we’re next door and share the two sides of the same history. I agree about the Walking Bridge. Many old train bridges have been converted to this purpose, along with some out-of-use rail beds converted to trails right across Canada. I love the idea that this old infrastructure is still being used for transportation – and a healthy alternative, to say the least. I think we have far more people engaged in outdoor activity since our trail system has become so extensive, and a lot of it is old rail bed, which hugged the rivers because it was flatter. Talk about a win-win: no steep grade and beautiful views.

  4. jennypellett says:

    I love glimpsing other people’s part of the globe – thanks for the lovely pictures, Jane.

    • Jane Fritz says:

      My pleasure, Jenny. It’s fun to share. We lived in London for the first two years we were married (a very long time ago) and then I spent a few years on and off in York when I was doing grad work in the 90s, so I know that your part of the world is brimming with wonderful villages, vistas, places of natural beauty … and London!

  5. alesiablogs says:

    so beautiful. The area reminds me of Europe. : )

  6. Atlantic Canada is on our list of trips that we must do – we’ve driven across Canada from Vancouver Island as far as Quebec city – but never further! Beautiful views of the river – glad spring is on the way at your side of the country. It is has most certainly arrived near the Pacific – sunny skies and gardening.

    • Jane Fritz says:

      If you find yourself in this part of the country, please let me know. We have a far gentler type of scenery than some other parts of the country, especially in BC, but there are many captivating places to see, and lots of history. And in a few months, maybe even less than that, we should gardening too!

  7. What a beautiful day! The view down by the river takes the breath away–in a nice way.

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Yes, and today it’s raining and tomorrow it’s supposed to be a high of 1C! As you know only too well, it’s important to take advantage of all the good days. I’m glad you like our river view, considering the dramatic landscapes you can share from Newfoundland. Thanks, Maurice.

      • I’ve only been in NB a couple of times but thoroughly enjoyed it each time. Back in the nineties I also worked with the program development division of the DOE and we frequently had meetings at Moncton. After hours I enjoyed walking around the city. I was only in St. John once, back in 2007 for a national literacy conference. I recall Dr. Fraser Mustard (RIP) giving a stirring keynote! Almost as stirring as the river! The restaurants were awesome too. An Italian one up by the Uni served the best spaghetti I have ever had and an Indian one (not too far from the Jungle Jim’s) had a hot sauce that even made my hair hurt.

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